Carbon from soil may warm planet even quicker

A 26-year long soil study has unearthed something rather concerning.


NSFW    THE GREEN — Carbon emissions from soil microbes could lead to a further rise in global temperatures, scientists have warned.

According to new research published in the journal Science, soil releases more carbon when heated passed a certain point.

In 1991, scientists placed heaters 10 cm under soil in the Harvard forest in Massachusetts. They artificially heated that area over 26 years and found that the warmed soil released 17 percent more of its carbon content compared to unheated soil.

"If the microbes in all landscapes respond to warming in the same way as we've observed in mid-latitude forest soils, this self-reinforcing feedback phenomenon will go on for a while and we are not going to be able to turn those microbes off," explained lead author Jessy Melillo in a University of Chicago news release.
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